On November 5th, the opening day of the sixth China International Import Expo (CIIE), the National Exhibition and Convention Center in Shanghai bustled with activity as “old friends” and “new friends” convened to explore potential partnerships.
Navigating the expansive exhibition areas, attendees found themselves captivated by an astonishing array of exhibits. The Business Exhibition alone sprawled across approximately 367,000 square meters, encompassing six primary exhibition zones and an innovation incubation area.
In the Consumer Goods exhibition section, a remarkable 4.6-meter-tall Lego model stole the show. Adorned with heart shapes, cheerful smiley faces, and whimsical wood ducks, this creation exuded childlike wonder. A Lego representative revealed that a team of 18 builders dedicated 491 hours to craft this massive 3D model exclusively for the CIIE.
The Lego Group, a multinational powerhouse, has consistently unveiled new products at previous CIIE sessions. This year was no exception as they introduced their latest offerings, aiming to delight Chinese consumers with fresh surprises.
Meanwhile, the multinational medical device giant, Elekta, unveiled its latest generation Gamma Knife stereotactic radiosurgery system. Laurent Leksell, the founder and board chairman of Elekta, highlighted that CIIE serves as a vital platform to showcase innovative technologies and clinical applications, fostering collaborative opportunities with industry peers.
This year’s CIIE witnessed a substantial 30 percent expansion in exhibition areas dedicated to cutting-edge technologies, encompassing energy, low carbon solutions, artificial intelligence (AI), as well as lifestyle and consumer goods. Over 400 new products, technologies, and services took center stage.
The first day of the event saw the signing of numerous practical cooperation agreements. AstraZeneca, a multinational pharmaceutical company, inked a significant deal with the Wuxi National High-tech District in Jiangsu province. The agreement entails an expansion of AstraZeneca’s small molecule drug production capacity in Wuxi. Additionally, AstraZeneca announced a phase-two project for an inhaler production supply base in Qingdao, Shandong province, and a rare disease cooperation project in the Jinan Innovation Zone of Shandong, aimed at developing innovative medicines.
Wang Lei, Global Executive Vice-President of AstraZeneca and President of its China branch, emphasized the 30th anniversary of AstraZeneca’s presence in the Chinese market, underscoring China’s role as a vital growth engine for the company worldwide. He expressed gratitude for the opportunity to engage with the Chinese market through CIIE.
Sinochem Holdings conducted a special signing ceremony at CIIE, solidifying agreements with clients from the United States, Brazil, Chile, and various other countries across multiple industries, including crude oil, refined oil, food and agricultural products, chemical products, chemical equipment, and service trade. Yang Shihao, Vice President of Sinochem Holdings, highlighted CIIE’s role as a global exchange platform, strengthening cooperation with global energy, chemical, and agricultural companies, expanding import channels, and ensuring supply chain stability.
CIIE has effectively harnessed China’s vast market potential, serving as a platform for international procurement, investment promotion, cultural exchanges, and open cooperation. It has made significant contributions to shaping a new development paradigm and advancing global economic growth.
The “CIIE effect” continues to unfold, enabling the world to tap into China’s expansive market. This has bolstered the confidence of multinational companies in long-term investments and development within China.
At this year’s CIIE, General Mills, an American food company, announced the full-scale entry of its pet food brand, Blue Buffalo, into the Chinese market. Blue Buffalo initially debuted in China during the fourth CIIE and has since leveraged preferential policies in pilot free trade zones, successfully establishing a presence in China through cross-border e-commerce platforms.
Su Qiang, representing General Mills, recognized the immense potential of China’s pet market over the past two years, fueling business growth. The company hopes to forge new partnerships within the industry through CIIE.
Toshinobu Umetsu, President and CEO of Shiseido’s Chinese branch, acknowledged CIIE as a reflection of China’s high-level openness. It offers foreign companies operating in China an array of market opportunities, investment prospects, and growth potential, enabling them to partake in China’s opening-up dividends. Shiseido’s new skincare brands and products, showcased at CIIE, have garnered substantial attention and consumer recognition, exemplifying the platform’s influential impact.
In summary, CIIE continues to serve as a dynamic catalyst for global collaboration, enabling nations and businesses to unlock the vast potential of China’s ever-growing market.